For some time, I’ve been meaning to write about a rather disturbing lack in the blogosphere. But this morning, I have my excuse to finally do it.
A long time ago (a couple years, which is an eternity in blog-time), Steven Den Beste categorized most bloggers into two categories — those who create original content, and those who call attention to items elsewhere. He originally called them “writers” and “editors,” but one of his readers immediately suggested the far-more-memorable “thinkers” and “linkers.”
I’ve aspired to be more of a “thinker” than a “linker.” It’s largely a matter of practicality for me; I don’t have the sources to come up with great scoops, nor do I have the time to track down items and be the first to “break” them. What I can do is look at events and ruminate about them, take my time to properly ponder them, and then bloviate at my leisure.
But one thing I’ve noticed is that the right tends to dominate the “thinkers” category. There’s the above-mentioned (and much missed) Steven Den Beste, Wretchard, Austin Bay, Will Franklin, Bill Whittle, and the non-blogging Victor Davis Hansen, just to name a few.
But where are the thinkers of the left? Where are the serious essayists, the scholars, the contemplators who would provide balance to the sheer intellectual power of the above?
I went looking through the big liberal blogs, and was left wanting. Atrios? Nope. Eschaton? Nope. Oliver Willis? God, no. The day Cousin Oliver posts more than two paragraphs of his own original thoughts, I’ll lick my cat.
And what passes for intelligent analysis and discourse on the left? One of the most popular pieces of the last week was this one. And a quick perusal of it shows a propensity for personal attacks and unsupported allegations than anything else.
Glenn Reynolds: “Never met a Democrat he couldn’t casually accuse of treason.”
No sense citing an example; everyone KNOWS it’s true.
Michelle Malkin: “Far-right affirmative action hire who is so bigoted she’d arrest herself for trying to cross a border… (i)f she didn’t have tits, she’d be stuck writing at Townhall.com.”
So the most offensive thing about Michelle Malkin is that she’s an Asian woman. How DARE she?
Powerline: “Bilious Minnesotans led by someone who nicknamed himself “Hindrocket.” Talk about being manly in that protests-too-much way.”
The guy’s name is “Hinderacker.” He was probably hung with the nickname “Hindrocket” in grade school. Which makes the sophomoric insult very appropriate.
Little Green Footballs: “If LGF didn’t exist, Dave Neiwert would have to invent it. Heady stuff for young rightwingers, like the Völkischer Beobachter was in the good old days. Site gives off a strong scent of roast pork.”
We’re all supposed to know who Dave Neiwert is? I’ve never heard of him, but Google would indicate he’s a Militia Movement weenie. But I did get the Nazi newspaper reference, so there’s a Godwin violation. Again, since we’re all on the same wavelength, specific examples are completely unnecessary.
That’s just the top four, and it doesn’t get any better. Never any specific examples given, just a long laundry list of allegations “that we all know are true” and inanely juvenile personal attacks. I don’t really have a problem with the juvenile personal attacks, but I prefer they be accompanied by actual serious thought.
It’s often been a cliche’ that conservatives think while liberals feel, but I used to think that was too shallow. After looking around the left edge of the blogosphere, though, I think it’s pretty true. The liberals FEEL everything, and believe that their FEELINGS and PASSION override facts and reality.
I’d like to challenge the readers to prove me wrong on this. Show me a couple liberal bloggers who think, who take long, serious looks at issues and events and analyze them from a logical (and, dare I say, “reality-based”) perspective.
I desperately want to read reasonable, logical, intelligent opinions that disagree with my own. But that seems to be damned rare.
Update: Pandagon deemed to grace this posting with a trackback, but I have a long-standing policy of deleting trackbacks that use extreme profanities in their titles. It’s a personal thing, a matter of taste and preference. Nonetheless, I don’t feel like being accused of “censorship,” so here’s the link to that piece. Personally, I didn’t find much of value in it, but for the sake of completeness, I’m including it.)